The Government today issued a reminder to the public that consumption vouchers must not be encashed.
It further explained that the consumption vouchers must be used at local retail, catering and service outlets or their online platforms that accept payments by six stored value facilities (SVFs).
The Government disbursed the first instalment of the consumption voucher under the 2023 Consumption Voucher Scheme (CVS) to about 6.4 million eligible people on April 16.
It pointed out that the six SVFs under the scheme, AlipayHK, BoC Pay, Octopus, PayMe from HSBC, Tap & Go and WeChat Pay HK, have set usage restrictions on the vouchers to prevent them from being used for non-designated purposes.
Concerning the recent posts on social media platforms alleging that consumption vouchers can be cashed in, the Government said it has asked the SVF operators to monitor merchants’ transactions using consumption vouchers.
If individual merchants are suspected of acts of irregularity, including encashment of vouchers, the relevant operators will take appropriate follow-up actions that include terminating the stored value payment service provided to the merchants concerned.
Additionally, the Government made it clear that if individual merchants collude with citizens to make forged transaction records to encash consumption vouchers through unlawful means, and engage in acts such as falsification and deception, they may have committed a criminal offence.
The CVS Secretariat will refer suspected non-compliant encashment cases to law enforcement agencies for follow-up, it added.
Call the hotline at 18 5000 or click here for more details about the scheme.